Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Saint Mary’s Chamber Singers to perform in France

WINONA, Minn. — The Chamber Singers of Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota will perform in Reims, France, as part of their 2013 Concert Tour.

The 24-voice select ensemble is directed by Dr. Patrick M. O’Shea, associate professor of music.

Tour performances will include the following liturgies and concerts:

• Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Winona, Minn.
   Saturday, March 2, Mass 5:15 p.m.

• Pensionnat de Sacre-Coeur, Reims, France
   Wednesday, March 6, Visit / Workshop, 8 to 11 a.m.

• Lycée Saint-Jean-Baptiste de La Salle, Reims, France
   Wednesday, March 6, Concert 6 p.m.

• Cathédrale de Notre Dame de Reims, France
   Sunday, March 10, Mass 11 a.m.

All concerts are free and open to the public, and guests are, of course, welcome at the various liturgies. Repertoire will include a cappella works by Byrd, Tallis, Hindemith, Stephen Chatman, Abbie Betinis and Stephen Paulus. The concerts will feature the premiere performances of Tre madrigali amorosi, three settings of poems by the Neapolitan Renaissance poet Torquato Tasso (1544-1595) by Dr. O’Shea.  These works feature special guest soloist and new faculty member Chun Chim (David) Leung, violin.

Upon their return, the Chamber Singers will present a free “Homecoming Concert” at the Chapel of Saint Mary of the Angels, 7th and Vila streets, Winona, on Thursday, March 14, at 7:30 p.m.

For more information, call (507) 457-1598 or fax (507) 457-1611.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Saint Mary’s hosts Alison Scott performance March 7

WINONA, Minn. — Saint Mary’s University’s “Off the Page” series will welcome the strong vocals of Alison Scott 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 7, at the Minnesota Marine Art Museum, 800 Riverview Dr.

Scott, a Minneapolis singer-songwriter, belts out her heartfelt lyrics with both grace and style. Her organic style delivers a unique sound which combines soulful vocals and brilliant lyrics with a keen sense of creativity and passion.

A true multi-talented performer, Scott’s voice can soar high one minute and be seductive and fragile the next. She’s also a keyboard talent, whose beautiful harmonies mesh with her skintight backing band that’s made up of four of the Twin Cities’ most accomplished players, all with experience and recognition.

Together, this five-piece unit is as powerful as it is talented; they are a serious force to be reckoned with when they fuse contemporary soul with undercurrents of ’60s Brit-pop, silky jazz, and full-throttle rock. Scott has opened for several national acts such as Bon Jovi, Chris Isaak, Marc Cohn, Boz Scaggs, and Nanci Griffith. Her CD release, “Chinese Whispers,” has been picked up for national distribution and is creating a lot of buzz around the Midwest. It was named one of the year’s 10 best albums by the St. Paul Pioneer Press.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for seniors and students. Call the SMU Box Office at (507) 457-1715 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday or go online at www.pagetheatre.org.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Saint Mary’s Page Series brings ‘The Gruffalo’ to life Feb. 27

WINONA, Minn. — Saint Mary’s University’s Page Series is hosting the Tall Stories production of “The Gruffalo” 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, in SMU’s Page Theatre.

Children ages 4 and older (and their parents) will enjoy watching as Mouse goes on an adventurous journey through the deep, dark woods in this magical, musical adaptation of the Blue Peter award-winning picture book by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

Mouse can scare hungry animals away with tall stories of the terrifying Gruffalo, but what happens when he comes face to face with the very creature he imagined? Let your imagination run wild with songs, laughs and scary fun.

Tall Stories, from London, England, was founded in 1996 by joint artistic directors Olivia Jacobs and Toby Mitchell. The company has grown to become a highly acclaimed, internationally touring, not-for-profit organization. They present old, new and timeless stories in fresh and exciting ways, and their productions tour to theatres, community venues and schools in the UK, Europe, North America and Asia. Tall Stories aims to tell stories in a physical, visual style, and their performances link original music with movement and a lot of laughs.

Tickets are $12 for adults, $5 for seniors and students. Call the SMU Box Office at (507) 457-1715 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday or go online at www.pagetheatre.org.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Saint Mary’s Dance Club hosts dance marathon fundraiser Feb. 15

WINONA, Minn. — The Saint Mary’s University Dance Club will host a public Dance Marathon Friday, Feb. 15, to raise money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.

Dance Marathon is a nationwide movement, involving college students at more than 150 schools across the country who raise money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in and near their local communities. The Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, together with their corporate partners and generous donors, have raised more than $4.4 billion for sick children across the United States.

The fundraiser, hosted in association with Gundersen Lutheran of La Crosse, Wis., will be held throughout the night (9 p.m. to 6 a.m.) in SMU’s Gostomski Fieldhouse.

Got two left feet? Don’t worry; everyone is welcome to participate by simply remaining on your feet and moving to the beat. Participants must be able to prove they are 18 or older.

Gundersen Lutheran representatives for the Children’s Miracle Network — as well as local families who have benefitted from its services — will be present. Come and be inspired by their stories.


8:15 p.m. — Doors open

9 p.m.  — Dance Marathon begins

9:30 p.m. — Opening Ceremony

10:30 pm — Longest Dance Competition

Midnight — Remembrance Ceremony

12:30 a.m. — The Oldie Moldie All-Stars band plays

2:30 a.m. — Re-motivation Ceremony

4 a.m. — Raffle

5:30 a.m. — Closing Ceremony

To register, go to www.smumn.edu/dancemarathon.

For more information, contact Serica Rowley at smrowl09@smumn.edu or (563) 495-1429.

SMU sends student researchers to Scholars at the Capitol Feb. 19

WINONA, Minn. — Three students from Saint Mary’s University will head to the Minnesota State Capitol Rotunda on Tuesday, Feb. 19, to present the results of their independent research and creative scholarship at the annual Minnesota Private College Scholars at the Capitol event.

The Minnesota Private College Council hosts this event to publicize and celebrate the achievements of just a few of the thousands of students who attend 15 private schools of higher learning in Minnesota, and to share research that may have long-term implications for Minnesotans.

This event — to be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. — will showcase current research projects completed by 37 undergraduate scholars from Minnesota private colleges and universities. Saint Mary’s students attending this year’s event include:

• Kristen Thelen and Sabrina Bushlack on “The Effects of In Utero Atrazine Exposure
 on RBC, PCV and Erythropoietin Levels in
 the Serum, Spleen, Kidney and Heart of Mice.”

• Mary Gerty on “Relationships Between Plant Richness, Area and Leafy Spurge Cover in Winona Goat Prairies.”

Their advisors are Dr. Deb Martin, biology professor, and Dr. Moni Berg-Binder, biology assistant professor. Dr. Martin will accompany the students.

The event is free and open to the public.

SMU Chamber Orchestra presents ‘The Genius of Amadeus’ Feb. 17

Dr. Johannes Müeller-Stosch

Dr. Jason Sah
WINONA, Minn. — The Saint Mary’s University Department of Music will present “The Genius of Amadeus,” an all-Mozart program featuring the Saint Mary’s University Chamber Orchestra, Sunday, Feb. 17.

The concert, free and open to the public, will begin at 3 p.m. in Figliulo Recital Hall, located in the SMU Performance Center.

The Chamber Orchestra will be under the direction of Dr. David Leung and guest conductor Dr. Johannes Müller-Stosch (from the Bob Cole Conservatory in Long Beach, Calif.). The program will include “Overture to La Clemenza da Tito,” “Serenata Notturna for Strings and Timpani” and “Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra.” Dr. Jason Sah, professor of violin at Juan Corpas University in Bogota, Colombia, will perform as a special guest artist.

SMU students to stage ‘Spitfire Grill’ Feb. 20-24

WINONA, Minn. — The Saint Mary’s University Department of Theatre and Dance will present the musical drama “Spitfire Grill” Feb. 20-24 at the Valéncia Arts Center, located at 10th and Vila streets.

Under the direction of Dr. Gary Diomandes, “Spitfire Grill” is centered around a feisty parolee (Percy) as she follows her dreams — based on a page from an old travel book — to a small town in Wisconsin and finds herself working at Hannah’s Spitfire Grill. Although it’s for sale, there are no takers in the struggling little town. Percy suggests to Hannah that she raffle off the business. Entry fees are $100 and the best essay about why you want the grill wins. Soon, mail is arriving by the wheelbarrow full, and things are getting hot at the Spitfire Grill. This musical triumph is an inspiring celebration of fresh starts and the power of what one person can do.

The show is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, Feb. 20-23, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 24.

Tickets are $10, $5 for students and seniors and are available at the SMU Box Office, (507) 457-1715, Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. or online at www.pagetheatre.org.

Friday, February 01, 2013

SMU’s Myers to direct play about Rockwell Kent

WINONA, Minn. — Judy Myers, associate professor and department chair of the Saint Mary’s University Department of Theatre and Dance, is serving as the director of “Angels in the Trees: Rockwell Kent in Winona,” a locally written and produced play about Rockwell Kent.

Theatre du Mississippi will present “Angels in the Trees” Feb. 8-10 at the Historic Masonic Theatre as part of Winona’s Rockwell Kent Centennial Celebration.

Kent came to Winona in 1912 as a liaison for a New York architect designing the Prentiss and Bell Briarcombe mansions.  An internationally known artist and illustrator, Kent is perhaps best known for his illustrations for “The Complete Works of William Shakespeare” and “Moby Dick.”

Myers has worked with Theatre du Mississippi on numerous projects, and she worked with developing playwrights in Chicago. “I really like working on new pieces; you have to take a new approach,” she said. She began collaborating with the play’s author, Lynn Nankivil, early in the writing process.

“Angels in the Trees,” Myers said, has a unique storyline because Kent was such a character. An adventurer and a philanderer, the artist’s time in Winona made for an interesting tale.

Myers said other highlights include old photos of Winona, which have been incorporated into the production, and stories about the other people in Winona who crossed paths with Kent.

“The best part has been getting to know these community actors and musicians and the collaboration that has occurred to tell Rockwell Kent’s interesting story,” Myers said.

Show times are 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 8-9, and again at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10. More information can be found at http://rockwellkentwinona.org/events/play.html. Tickets are $15, $7 for students and are available at www.brownpapertickets.com.

SMU presents Rockwell Kent prints Feb. 6-27 at Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries

WINONA, Minn. — Saint Mary’s University will partner with several local organizations to celebrate the 100th anniversary of artist Rockwell Kent’s stay in Winona. The week-long festival will take place Feb. 6-10 and feature exhibits of his works and other activities that illustrate his importance as an international artist.

A selection of Kent’s graphic works will be presented at Saint Mary’s University from Feb. 6-27. “Rockwell Kent Prints: Selections from the Ralf Nemec Collection” will be on display in the Lillian Davis Hogan Galleries, located in the Toner Student Center, from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily.

Kent lived in Winona in 1912 while overseeing work on Briarcombe Farms, the historic Prentiss/Bell homes. The exhibit includes many of Kent’s best-known fine art prints including wood engravings, etchings and lithographs. Kent’s often-symbolic use of the figure is highlighted. The selection of prints in the Saint Mary’s exhibit is complemented by the concurrent Winona State University exhibition, also drawn from the Nemec Collection, as well as the Minnesota Marine Art Museum exhibition and the Rockwell Kent Centennial festival in February. Prints are on loan from the private collection of New York collector Ralf Nemec.

The opening reception will be from 5-6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 6, and is part of Winona’s Progressive Reception and Opening Ceremony of the Rockwell Kent Festival. The reception and exhibition are free and open to the public.

The festival is sponsored by the City of Winona, the Minnesota Marine Art Museum, Winona County Historical Society, WSU, Saint Mary’s University and Theatre du Mississippi.

For more information on the festival and events, email info@rockwellkentwinona.org or to go www.rockwellkentwinona.org.